Car Art Opel’s new fully electric creation really wows
Can you imagine how the German engineers in Russelsheim felt when they discovered that one of their most futuristic creations in the new Corsa-e results in a flaw?
And it's a flaw most people won't ever even realise exits.
The fully-electric mode of one of Ireland's most loved cars of all time has been a long time coming. And now that it is here car enthusiasts can unite in their appreciation for this stunning piece of art.
Earlier this month I finally got behind the wheel of the highly anticipated car but as soon as I pushed the ignition button I was shocked to discover that maximum range on the clock was apparently only 250km and not the heavily-advertised 337km.
The reason? This car is so advanced that it has a memory. And because manufacturers share cars among journalists (for one week at a time) before selling them on the battery in my test car thought I was the previous tester. Or the one before that. And whoever was driving it before me obviously had a boy racer streak in them because the range on the clock was down 25 per cent on what I expected. Imagine an on board computer that is that clever!
Here's the thing though. Heavy-footed driving doesn't affect the actual battery to that extent. My apparent 250km range was the computer's calculation on how many km I would achieve based on previous drives.
One week with little old Driving Miss Daisy here and the range was back to normal. So much so that when I handed it back 180km later there was still 130km on the range. If you bought one for yourself (I am reliably informed they have ample stock in every single dealer across the country so waiting times will be non existent and 24-hour test drives offered), you won't experience my dilemma. The on board computer will sync with your driving patterns. Obviously. So you will see the glorious 337 every time you get inside your fully-charged vehicle.
OK…so that is a long way of describing a minor flaw that no one will probably ever see but I am flummoxed by it because it blows my mind how far these electric cars have come. And I am not just talking about the premium brands like BMW, Audi or Tesla. Nowadays EVs come in all shapes and sizes and to cater to all needs.
There is still a mark-up on price compared to combustion versions but that is to be expected for a few more years while mainstream manufacturers find a way to keep costs down so they can pass the savings on to the buyers.
We are now in the age of electrifying so called 'normal' cars. And I love it. No more bonkers designs to let everyone know you are saving the planet with every single school run or shopping jaunt. Nowadays you can drive EV versions of popular combustion models. The Corsa-e is a prime example. For starters, as we have stated several times since the official launch in February, the new look Corsa is fantastic. It is slick, compact and different. And now it comes in an EV form - it is the total package.
337 isn't the only number that can excite you about this car. How about '136' which is the number of bhp under the bonnet generated by the impressive 50kWh battery? And that speed and torque doesn't seem to drain the battery either like in some EVs on the market?
Another number for you to get your head around is '26,814', which is the number of euro you will need to drive one of these away from a dealership.
The as-standard list of features is exactly what you would expect, too. There's a 7-inch colour touchscreen (it's 10 inches in my Elite spec), a multimedia Infotainment system, 16-inch silver 4-twinspoke alloy wheels (17" in Elite), body-colour front and rear bumpers, electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors, lane departure warning with lane assist, speed sign recognition, driver drowsiness system, six air bags and automatic emergency city braking. That all comes in even the most basic level Corsa-e you can buy in Ireland today.
Upgrade to the Elite spec (from only €30,800) and the as-standard list gets even more impressive with features like heated front seats and steering wheel, OpelConnect, rain-sensitive windscreen wipers, centre armrest with storage, fabric/premium leather effect seat trim, panoramic rear-view camera, front and rear parking distance sensors, electrically folding door mirrors, keyless entry and start, dark-tinted rear windows, the aforementioned 17-inch diamond-cut gloss black 5-twinspoke alloy wheels and a remote control security alarm system.
I loved the ICE version of this so the fact that they have the EV option, with such an impressive range and at such a good price, is a triumph for the German manufacturer. Ironically, the main competition to it comes from within its own stable in the form of the Peugeot e208 which is ever-so-slightly better looking and has an ever-so-slightly better range.
But the Corsa-e comes with an Opel badge on the front and a lot of Irish people won't make the obvious comparison. This may be one of my favourite EVs out there.